Mac Mini G4 - Grey Screen
  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    Puni
    Posts: 27 from 2020/7/21
    From: Norway
    Hi everyone,

    I have a Mac Mini G4, which I use for MorphOS. Sadly it has stopped working. Whenever I try to power up the computer, it shows a blank, grey screen. Have tried various key combinations during startup to boot from CD (MorphOS live CD), access Open Firmware, but none works anymore. Did also change the RAM, tried DVI-VGA adapter and regular DVI cable, switched monitors, but still the same issue.

    So, the question, is there anything else one can try to get it up and running or is it best looking for a replacement?

    Thanks in advance. :-)
    Member of Void - An Amiga demo group (website)
  • »30.05.21 - 13:34
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  • MorphOS Developer
    jacadcaps
    Posts: 2539 from 2003/3/5
    From: Canada
    Make sure you’re using an Apple kb to try and access OF/other key combos. Some kbs may not trigger this correctly.

    Try to erase nvram with cmd+alt+n+v. Afair keeping those keys pressed as you press and hold power button with 3rd hand can help too. Do this while it’s powered off initially.

    [ Edited by jacadcaps 31.05.2021 - 00:43 ]
  • »30.05.21 - 14:11
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    Puni
    Posts: 27 from 2020/7/21
    From: Norway
    Quote:

    jacadcaps wrote:
    Make sure you’re using an Apple kb to try and access OF/other key combos. Some kbs may not trigger this correctly.

    Try to erase nvram with cmd+alt+N+v. Afair keeping those keys pressed as you press and hold power button with 3rd hand can help too. Do this while it’s powered off initially.


    Many thanks, Jacadcaps! :-) I will ask someone to help me with this. Hopefully I'll get it up and running again.
    Member of Void - An Amiga demo group (website)
  • »30.05.21 - 19:23
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    NewSense
    Posts: 1184 from 2012/11/10
    From: Manchester, UK/GB
    @ Puni - I also thought it could be a dying/corrupted HDD, that gets to the boot process but fails on the initial screen, and with an "alien" keyboard maybe the "alt" or "C" presses aren't recognised so it remains in a state that won't boot, but if you've got an Apple keyboard plugged in then this may well not be relevant . . . it's just a thought that . . . might be relevant. ;-)
    MacMini 1.5GHz,10,2,64MB VRAM,1GB,Airport, Bluetooth,A1016 Keyboard,T-RB22 Mouse,DVD-RW-DL+CD-RW,Iomega MiniMax,Belkin 6 port 3 x Firewire/3 x, USB2, MorphOS 3.12, Mac OSX 10.4/10.5, A1138+A1139 PwrBk MOS v3.12,Model 5,8/5,9, & PowerMac G5 2.3GHz(DP)
  • »30.05.21 - 23:43
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    Puni
    Posts: 27 from 2020/7/21
    From: Norway
    Quote:

    NewSense wrote:
    @ Puni - I also thought it could be a dying/corrupted HDD, that gets to the boot process but fails on the initial screen, and with an "alien" keyboard maybe the "alt" or "C" presses aren't recognised so it remains in a state that won't boot, but if you've got an Apple keyboard plugged in then this may well not be relevant . . . it's just a thought that . . . might be relevant. ;-)


    Hi NewSense,

    Thanks for the info. :-) I don't have an original Apple keyboard, unfortunately. If this could solve the problem, I could try finding an old one for sale or lend it from someone. Could it help trying different "PC" keyboards too? Thanks again. :-)
    Member of Void - An Amiga demo group (website)
  • »31.05.21 - 12:30
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  • Priest of the Order of the Butterfly
    Priest of the Order of the Butterfly
    Amigaharry2
    Posts: 916 from 2010/1/6
    From: EU-Austria (Wien)
    Try it! I have on both Minis (and G5) normal USB-PC-keyboards, which works fine (can reach OF-console).
    Peg2, 3xPowerMac G5, 2xPowerbookG4, 2x MacMiniG4, Efika (again), A3000T and life is never boring.....
  • »31.05.21 - 16:18
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    Puni
    Posts: 27 from 2020/7/21
    From: Norway
    Quote:

    Amigaharry2 wrote:
    Try it! I have on both Minis (and G5) normal USB-PC-keyboards, which works fine (can reach OF-console).



    Got hold of an older Apple USB keyboard here, which looks like it could be from an old Power Mac of some kind. Waiting for it to arrive in the mail. :-) Hopefully this will sort it out, or else I'll have to get a "new" MorphOS computer.
    Member of Void - An Amiga demo group (website)
  • »10.06.21 - 15:27
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    NewSense
    Posts: 1184 from 2012/11/10
    From: Manchester, UK/GB
    @ Puni - If this is of any use to you . . .

    I use an Apple A1016 Bluetooth wireless keyboard with my MacMini G4 - which requires setting up through Mac OSX as the Bluetooth options/pairing are required to be set up on MacOSX (Dual Boot MorphOS/MacOSX - Tiger 10.4.x is more preferable to me). 8-)

    You can download Tiger 10.4.x from Wayback-Machine / Web-Archive - $ Search = Mac Tiger as either CD ISOs or a DVD archive along with loads more Mac stuff (if you really want to . . . though I prefer MorphOS) but I really only use it to get the Bluetooth features operational. 8-D
    MacMini 1.5GHz,10,2,64MB VRAM,1GB,Airport, Bluetooth,A1016 Keyboard,T-RB22 Mouse,DVD-RW-DL+CD-RW,Iomega MiniMax,Belkin 6 port 3 x Firewire/3 x, USB2, MorphOS 3.12, Mac OSX 10.4/10.5, A1138+A1139 PwrBk MOS v3.12,Model 5,8/5,9, & PowerMac G5 2.3GHz(DP)
  • »11.06.21 - 00:11
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  • Order of the Butterfly
    Order of the Butterfly
    Templario
    Posts: 423 from 2012/4/28
    Humm, for my own experice, the problem can be in the boot selector from MacMini, if the DVD neither works, this internal hardware can be dammage and it hasn't reparing, but always there is hopem and the mechanical hard disk cans dammage because this hardware has almost 20 years old, in this case you can put other hard disk mechanical or SSD, but you first try to start the MacMini from DVD with MacOS or MorphOS CD/DVD, also if you have an ide adapter, remove the hard disk connect it to this IDE adapter and connect all to one Pc or other computer to know if the hard disk is live.
    I write many suggestions but with a windos board you can hold down the C key while the MacMini reboot and with the CD or DVD start the computer, if your computer neither start well, the problem is boot selector hardware from MacMini, that the started with the CD, well the hard disk is dammage.
    I hope hel you.
  • »11.06.21 - 08:19
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    Puni
    Posts: 27 from 2020/7/21
    From: Norway
    Thanks everyone for your help in getting the Mac Mini up and running again. :-) I'm currently waiting for the keyboard to arrive here before I do anything more, but... turns out I was lucky enough to get hold of a PowerBook G4 yesterday! Installed MorphOS on it, so now I'm back in action again, hehe. Will still try to get the Mini working of course, but I think this laptop will see a lot more use in the future. ;-)
    Member of Void - An Amiga demo group (website)
  • »15.06.21 - 08:59
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    Puni
    Posts: 27 from 2020/7/21
    From: Norway
    Thought I'd give a quick update about the computer. After receiving the Apple keyboard, I managed to get it to boot the latest MorphOS release on CD-ROM. I did the same thing as when using "PC"-keyboards, just holding down "C" while booting, but with an Apple one it functioned straight away.

    The OS reported an error of some sort about the HDD, so that is why it hasn't been working. Formatted the HDD and installed MorphOS again and everything is back to normal, but I fear I will encounter such an error in the future, since the HDD is apparantly not in good health. Anyway, very happy about the fact that computer is usable again. :-)

    Btw, is there a good program one can use to scan the HDD for errors and perhaps fix them or isolate them (so that the HDD does not attempt to use this part of the storage)?

    Thanks in advance and also thanks for all the input earlier. :-)

    [ Edited by Puni 18.10.2021 - 22:06 ]
    Member of Void - An Amiga demo group (website)
  • »18.10.21 - 21:04
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  • Paladin of the Pegasos
    Paladin of the Pegasos
    NewSense
    Posts: 1184 from 2012/11/10
    From: Manchester, UK/GB
    @ Puni - If you've managed to re-format the HDD then it may well now be OK.

    Sometimes following shutdown or some software crash the HDD can become corrupted, data not getting written to respective sectors, leaving you with a checksum error or other data anomalies on the HDD, which often can be fixed using SFSDoctor in the Tools directory, for MorphOS partitions. For Apple partitions you can of course use an Apple OSX installation disc to boot to the Mac OSX initial installation screen, and then choose from the utilities menu the Disk Utility tool, which is much like HD Config for MorphOS, but also checks/verifies/repairs the Apple partitions (if you're lucky) as I've not found it that reliable at doing what it is supposed to do, but it usually will check the disk for errors and let you know if there are any on an Apple partition (such as the Boot HDD partition for MorphOS - as it's HFS formatted).

    I usually have a working Apple Tiger partition (Dual Boot) so I can use the Bluetooth capabilities from an Apple OSX installation with MorphOS, along with the Apple Boot partition (60MB) and the MorphOS (SFS system) partition, along with other partitions if there's space on the HDD in total to accomodate them all without making the other system partitions too small to be useful/realistic storage sizes.

    SFSDoctor does a great job on the few occasions I've needed it to fix a HDD partition for MorphOS, and often MorphOS fixes such data/checksum issues on-the-fly as it boots, but there are occasions when it "hangs", which it seems is what had happened with your Mac Mini HDD.

    Anyway, now it seems to be fixed it will probably be OK, unless you've checked it with other HDD software tools and found S.M.A.R.T. issues or other HDD errors. Glad to hear it's working again for you to enjoy using it. 8-D
    MacMini 1.5GHz,10,2,64MB VRAM,1GB,Airport, Bluetooth,A1016 Keyboard,T-RB22 Mouse,DVD-RW-DL+CD-RW,Iomega MiniMax,Belkin 6 port 3 x Firewire/3 x, USB2, MorphOS 3.12, Mac OSX 10.4/10.5, A1138+A1139 PwrBk MOS v3.12,Model 5,8/5,9, & PowerMac G5 2.3GHz(DP)
  • »19.10.21 - 00:27
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  • Caterpillar
    Caterpillar
    Puni
    Posts: 27 from 2020/7/21
    From: Norway
    Hi NewSense,

    Thanks for the great explanation! That was very helpful information. :-)

    I'm happy to report that the Mac Mini is still working fine and no more errors has been reported. Now I look forward to enjoying the latest update to ScummVM on it. ;-)
    Member of Void - An Amiga demo group (website)
  • »20.10.21 - 11:38
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